Update: APD announces $5,000 reward in Kirkwood killing

Xavier Arnold (Courtesy CBS Atlanta)
Xavier Arnold (Courtesy CBS Atlanta)

Update: Atlanta Police have arrested a juvenile in connection to this case. More at this link. A vigil for Xavier Arnold will be held Saturday, Sept. 26, at 5 p.m. in Kirkwood. More at this link.

A man shot in the head on a Kirkwood bike trail yesterday has died, according to Atlanta Police. The victim has been identified as Xavier Arnold, 21. This evening, Atlanta Police announced that the reward for information in Arnold’s shooting had been increased to $5,000 and they were being aided by US Marshals to find the two assailants. Our media affiliate CBS Atlanta has video on this story at this link.

Edgewood Corner Tavern owner Melanie Rabb said Arnold had started working there in early December and described him as friendly and always smiling. Rabb said the young man studied art at the Savannah College of Art & Design and was taking photographs of the old depot and buildings along the railroad tracks where The Hunger Games movies were filmed. She said he always had a drawing pad with him. The Atlanta Journal-Consittuion reports that Arnold also served in the U.S. Army Reserves.

“This  could have been any of us out enjoying a beautiful sunset like the one yesterday,” Rabb said. “This was a senseless act. I am so sad and angry.”

Atlanta Police said Arnold, another male friend and a female friend were walking on the bike trail that runs parallel to the train tracks near Warren Street NE in the Kirkwood neighborhood around 5:30 p.m. on Dec. 26. The trio were approached by two other males in a robbery attempt. Arnold was shot in the head and later died at Grady Hospital, while the other male was shot in the leg and is recovering at Grady. The female was not injured.

Friday afternoon, City Councilwoman Natalyn Archibong, who represents the Kirkwood neighborhood, released this statement: “I am truly saddened to hear of the senseless killing of young U.S. Army soldier Xavier Arnold who was shot while walking along a bike path in Kirkwood Thursday night. It is especially heartbreaking when a person who has sought to defend this country is gunned down at home. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family. The Atlanta Police Department is actively investigating the incident and is working to locate the two male suspects. I urge anyone who may have information to contact Atlanta police.”

Anyone with information about the shooting should contact Crime Stoppers at (404) 577-TIPS (8477).

Check back for more updates.

  1. I am so saddened and disgusted by the incessant violent crimes in our city. From John Henderson and Patrick Cotrona to the many other unsolved homicides in Atlanta, something has to change. Besides joining our neighborhood associations and participating in online dialogues, what else can we do to stop this senseless killing?

  2. We need our city representatives to stop saying they are saddened and actually take action. We need more police in these areas and actually patrol. As a resident for over 8 yrs. in EAV I have watched my friends and neighbors get killed. The police show up for a short time while the news cameras are watching then go away. I’ve witnessed the lack of effort in the police that patrol and come out. They roll by but rarely stop.

    I’m truly sickened by the “I’m saddened statements” and would prefer to see some action.

    Just 1 week prior a woman was held at gunpoint on May Ave, where Cortona was murdered, after visiting the farmers market…do I even need to reiterate my frustration and the frustration of our communities?

    We need a call to action or replace the “saddened” politicians

  3. To Kerry McCoy:

    What we can do to stop the senseless killing is to do some shooting of our own to put the criminals in the hospital or morgue so they won’t hurt anyone else.

    Even with more police patrolling, thugs will still be out there attacking people, and I for one will not be pulling my cell phone to dial 911 when I need help right now. I will be pulling my pistol to keep myself and my loved ones safe. I am my own and best first-responder, and don’t have to wait for someone else to rescue me while hoping the bad guy shows mercy until the police get there.

    I always carry my firearm, and am always prepared to use it if needed to stop a criminal from doing his evil. Don’t be a helpless sheep, be a sheepdog when the wolf comes, and take a bite out of crime.

  4. I get infuriated every time I see an APD officer on 75/85 writing speeding tickets. We need them in our neighborhoods, not on our highways. Let them write tickets in the neighborhoods, I don’t care… at least they will be present and a deterrent to some of the senseless crimes…

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